Klagenfurt am Wörthersee
There are two reasons for going to Klagenfurt am Wörthersee, the city and the lake. They are about 4 kilometers apart, as you can see from the map below.
Before I went there, I thought the lake would be the thing in Klagenfurt, but it turned out to be the city that was more charming. The lake area was mostly suitable for families with small children.
But Klagenfurt centre was a perfect example of a small and cozy Central European city. Or actually it's the 6th largest in Austria, and it's bigger than it first appears.
And the fact that there's beautiful a Alpine lake nearby where you can go and enjoy a meal on lakeside restaurants, or have a drink and get some sun is a bonus that few Central European cities have.
Where to stay in Klagenfurt
There are only a couple of hotels by the lake, but it could be a good option for families with kids. But it's not a long drive from the city centre either. And there is also a campsite by the lake.
For everyone else the city centre or near it is the best choice, because there isn't much to see outside the centre. It's called Innere Stadt on the map.
There is also a campsite by the lake: camping-woerthersee.at
Things to do by the lake
Wörthersee is a big lake and this section covers only the most eastern part of it, one that is inside the Klagenfurt city limits. Buses run every 15 minutes between Klagenfurt (Heiligengeistplatz) and Strandbad by the lake.
There is a small beach as well as three long piers for swimming and sunbathing right by the lake. They charge a fee to get in, but facilities are way better than on a typical public beach. There are also a couple of restaurants and a bakery.
Pictures 5-9 in the gallery above were taken inside the paid area, just after it was opened in the morning, that's why there aren't many people around.
There are also two smaller bathing places near the Strandbad Klagenfurt: Loretto is very close and easy to walk to, but reaching Meiernigg takes more effort. There's a nicer restaurant next to the Loretto strandbad.
If you don't want to pay for swimming, unfortunately there are no public beaches in Klagenfurt area. And most of the lake is filled with private residences, so it isn't easy to find an empty spot on the shore either.
Minumundus is an area with miniature models of famous sites in the world. Website: minimundus.at
How to get to Klagenfurt
The closest bigger airport is in Ljubljana, and it's only a rather short direct bus ride to Klagenfurt. A little over an hour. But there aren't too many direct lines in a day.
Kärnten (or Klagenfurt) Airport is only a few kilometers away from the city centre, but it's a small one, and not many airlines operate to/from that airport.
Trains and buses from other cities in Austria: oebb.at
Winter: The winter months in Klagenfurt are cold and the temperature goes below 0°C from December to February. On the coldest days it can get to -10°C, so a proper winter clothing is necessary, such as hat, winter shoes, gloves and scarf.
Spring: By March, the temperature starts rising towards the late spring. The temperature is on average around 8°C - 15 °C. May can be already a very warm month with temperatures going occasionally over 20°C. The evenings aren’t that warm so it’s still good to have a coat with you along with a jumper and trousers. Late spring and summer months are the periods when it rains the most.
Summer: June, July and August are the warmest months of the year though the average high temperatures stay around 25°C, since Klagenfurt is located in a mountainous area. During these months, Klagenfurt gets the biggest rainfalls during the year.
Autumn: The temperatures drop to 8°C - 15 °C in the Autumn months. In November the temperature can be already at 0°C. Similar clothing than in the spring time is advisable.